High taxes on alcoholic beverages lead to consumption of bootleg alcohol: CHP
The most important reason for the supply and consumption of bootleg alcohol is the high taxes that have been levied on alcoholic beverages in recent years, according to a report prepared by the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP).
Procurement, production, increase in consumption, economic, social and political dimensions of bootleg alcohol were discussed in a report, which was prepared at the instruction of Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, the party’s leader.
The most important reason for bootleg alcohol supply and consumption is the high taxes levied on alcoholic beverages in recent years, according to the report.
Some findings are listed in the report, which argues the data published by international statistical institutions and the Court of Accounts reports reveal that the prices of alcoholic beverages have increased at extraordinary levels.
“Bootleg alcohol consumption is more a result of alcoholic beverages not being able to be purchased due to high prices, rather than personal preference. The people, who are getting poorer in socio-economic terms, are getting their alcohol consumption cheaper and illegally with the government’s increasing intervention in the secular lifestyle,” the report said.
The report requested the decrease of the high taxes, especially the special consumption tax, to a reasonable level.
The tax on the national favorite rakı, an anise-flavored spirit, has leaped by 443 percent in the past decade and the tax on beer by 365 percent.
A 70-centiliter bottle of rakı costs around 170 liras ($22), taxed 234 percent over the original price.
With the death of six people out of the 14 people who were hospitalized last week with symptoms of methyl alcohol poisoning in the northwestern province Bursa, the number of deaths due to fake alcohol in Turkey has reached at least 95 since Oct. 9.
Bootleg alcohol, made with methyl alcohol instead of ethyl alcohol, is severely hazardous to health.
Its consumption can cause permanent blindness and often proves fatal.